12.28.2011

Ciksetmihail's Flow

I am sure I have spelled wrong, but there's a researcher out there with a crazy double name who is all the rage in education because of his concept 'flow'

I think maybe he's a psychologist, but the ed people have adopted him, especially arts education.

Now, I think one of the main problems with public education is the inability of most teachers to challenge their students enough to get them in the zone where they flow. (Flow means that you are working at the top level of your capacity because the challenge matches your ability just right. Its not too boring or too hard, and you are working hard at it and end up losing yourself in the moment and becoming immersed in whatever you are doing)

I think students love this state, which is why they do other things, such as mountain biking, skateboarding, listening to music loud while doing homework, etc. I think its partly why extreme sports are so popular, because mastering them allows for intense moments of flow, but it is also why group sports and music ensembles have the potential to be popular, because this can happen there too.

The problem is that the system is set up for the lowest common denominator, and to meet standards, not to engage students at their highest level.

I think the system could engage students on so many different levels, but because of how it is set up, it won't be able to adapt for a while yet. I hated high school and found most of it meaningless, now I wish I had done chemistry in high school and university, but I thought it was completely useless. Same with Math. Now I wish someone had shown me how it connected to life, to work. But the teachers were working within a broken system, so its not only their fault, but there were a few teachers who were completely inspiring and they straddled the line between being within the system and totally eschewing it.


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